The Western-backed Syrian political opposition is criticizing U.S.-led airstrikes in Syria for focusing on the Islamic State group and other extremists while leaving President Bashar Assad's government untouched.

Syrian National Coalition chief Nasr al-Hariri says it regrets that the "international community has come up with partial solutions to the Syrian conflict in which hundreds of thousands were killed or detained by the Assad regime."

In a Coalition statement released on Wednesday, al-Hariri also said that any effort other than helping Syrians overthrow Assad will only further fuel extremism.

The United States and its Arab allies began an air campaign early Tuesday that aims to destroy the Islamic State group in Syria. The U.S. also struck the al-Qaida-affiliated Nusra Front.